Under Internal Revenue Laws
of the United States
Secretary of the Treasury
Government Printing Office
Taxability of interest from bonds and dividends on stock of domestic corporations owned by nonresident aliens, and the liabilities of nonresident aliens under section 2 of the act of October 3, 1913.
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Office of Commissioner of Internal Revenue
Washington D.C., March 21, 1916
To collectors of internal revenue:
Under the decision of the Supreme Court of the United States in the case of Brushaber v. Union Pacific Railway [sic] Co., decided January 24, 1916, it is hereby held that income accruing to nonresident aliens in the form of interest from the bonds and dividends on the stock of domestic corporations is subject to the income tax imposed by the act of October 3, 1913.
Nonresident aliens are not entitled to the specific exemption designated in paragraph C of the income-tax law, but are liable for the normal and additional tax upon the entire net income “from all property owned, and of every business, trade, or profession carried on in the United States,” computed upon the basis prescribed in the law.
The responsible heads, agents, or representatives of nonresident aliens, who are in charge of the property owned or business carried on within the United States, shall make a full and complete return of the income therefrom on Form 1040, revised, and shall pay any and all tax, normal and additional, assessed upon the income received by them in behalf of their nonresident alien principals.
The person, firm, company, copartnership, corporation, joint-stock company, or association, and insurance company in the United States, citizen or resident alien, in whatever capacity acting, having the control, receipt, disposal, or payment of fixed or determinable annual or periodic gains, profits, and income of whatever kind, to a nonresident alien, under any contract or otherwise, which payment shall represent income of a nonresident alien from the exercise of any trade or profession within the United States, shall deduct and withhold from such annual or periodic gains, profits, and income, regardless of amount, and pay to the officer of the United States Government authorized to receive the same such sum as will be sufficient to pay the normal tax of 1 per cent imposed by law, and shall make an annual return on Form 1042.
The normal tax shall be withheld at the source from income accrued to nonresident aliens from corporate obligations and shall be returned and paid to the Government by debtor corporations and withholding agents as in the case of citizens and resident aliens, but without benefit of the specific exemption designated in paragraph C of the law.
Form 1008, revised, claiming the benefit of such deductions as may be applicable to income arising within the United States and for refund of excess tax withheld, as provided by paragraphs B and P of the income-tax law, may be filed by nonresident aliens, their agents or representatives, with the debtor corporation, withholding agent, or collector of internal revenue for the district in which the withholding return is required to be made.
That part of paragraph E of the law which provides that “if such person * * * is absent from the United States, * * * the return and application may be made for him or her by the person required to withhold and pay the tax * * *” is held to be applicable to the return and application on Form 1008, revised, of nonresident aliens.
A fiduciary acting in the capacity of trustee, executor, or administrator, when there is only one beneficiary and that beneficiary a nonresident alien, shall render a return on Form 1040, revised; but when there are two or more beneficiaries, one or all of whom are nonresident aliens, the fiduciary shall render a return on Form 1041, revised, and a personal return on Form 1040, revised, for each nonresident alien beneficiary.
The liability, under the provisions of the law, to render personal returns, on or before March 1 next succeeding the tax year, of annual net income accrued to them from sources within the United States during the preceding calendar year, attaches to nonresident aliens as in the case of returns required from citizens and resident aliens. Therefore, a return on Form 1040, revised, is required except in cases where the total tax liability has been or is to be satisfied at the source by withholding or has been or is to be satisfied by personal return on Form 1040, revised, rendered in their behalf. Returns shall be rendered to the collector of internal revenue for the district in which a nonresident aliens carries on his principal business within the United States or, in the absence of a principal business within the United States and in all cases of doubt, the collector of internal revenue at Baltimore, Md., in whose district Washington is situated.
Nonresident aliens are held to be subject to the liabilities and requirements of all administrative, special, and general provisions of law in relation to the assessment, remission, collection, and refund of the income tax imposed by the act of October 3, 1913, and collectors of internal revenue will make collection of the tax by distraint, garnishment, execution, or other appropriate process provided by law.
So much of T.D. 1976 as relates to ownership certificate 1004, T.D. 1977 (certificate Form 1060), 1988 (certificate Form 1060), T.D. 2017 (nontaxability of interest from bonds and dividends on stock), T.D. 2030 (certificate Form 1071), T.D. 2162 (nontaxability of interest from bonds and dividends on stock) and all rulings heretofore made which are in conflict herewith are hereby superseded and repealed.
This decision will be held effective as of January 1, 1916.
W. H. Osborn
Commissioner of Internal Revenue
Approved, March 30, 1916:
Byron R. Newton,
Acting Secretary of the Treasury